Responding to a question from Metro Weekly about former Pennsylvania Sen. Rick Santorum (R)'s claim in New Hampshire on Jan. 9 that he and President Obama hold the same views about the right of same-sex couples to marry, White House press secretary Jay Carney initially parried today, saying, "I think ... you know very well what the president's views are on LGBT isses and civil rights. The President is very proud of this administration’s record on those issues."
When pressed by Metro Weekly that Santorum's comments were specifically in reference to marriage, Carney said, "I have no updates for you on the President’s position on same-sex marriage. I think that you know and others here know and understand his position broadly on LGBT issues is quite significantly different from that particular candidate's views."
Mediaite's Tommy Christopher later followed up by asking about a similar tweet over the weekend from Sarah Palin, who wrote that the president and GOP presidential candidates' views of the "definiton of marriage" were the same. Carney responded similarly, pointing Christopher to Obama's previous statements on the issue and saying of Obama's "evolving" position on marriage equality, "I have nothing for you on it."
Read the full transcript of both questions below the jump.
Think Progress's Igor Volsky captured part of today's questioning:
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THE WHITE HOUSE
Office of the Press Secretary
For Immediate Release January 10, 2012
BY PRESS SECRETARY JAY CARNEY
James S. Brady Press Briefing Room
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MR. CARNEY: Chris.
Q Yes. Yesterday Rick Santorum said that he and the President have the same view on same-sex marriage. What’s the President’s response to candidates using his position on marriage equality to say that?
MR. CARNEY: I think, Chris, you know very well what the President’s views are on LGBT issues and civil rights, and the President is very proud of this administration’s record on those issues.
Q That’s not the question. The question is about marriage.
MR. CARNEY: The question is -- but I have no updates for you on the President’s position on same-sex marriage. I think that you know and others here know and understand that his position broadly on LGBT issues is quite significantly different from that particular candidate’s views.
Q Thanks, Jay.
MR. CARNEY: ... last one.
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Q And to follow on Chris’s question. Over the weekend, Sarah Palin tweeted out something similar, but the language that she used was very specific. She said, “The President position on the definition of marriage is the same as Santorum’s, Gingrich’s and Romney’s.”
MR. CARNEY: Again, I would just point you to the answer I just gave.
Q Would that be a true statement?
MR. CARNEY: I will just point you to what the President has said and his record --
Q But the President -- he said before that he believed that marriage was between one man and one woman, years ago. And now he says his position is evolving. Would it be fair to say that that definition no longer exclusively --
MR. CARNEY: Again, I don’t have anything -- I don’t have anything new to give you on this. I appreciate the question, but the President has spoken to it. I’m sure he’ll be asked again about it. But as of now, I have no --nothing new for you on it.
Thank you all very much.
END 1:15 P.M. EST